The war shows it is crucial to enable African countries to import from each other “rather than relying on Europe,” Sanni says in Lagos. Countries need to “pump up production capacity where they have comparative advantage.”
Research by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in May says that the impact of the war could push Africa into “serious debt distress” and increase inequality as higher food and fuel prices hit the poorest households hardest. Priority actions include reducing Africa’s dependency on food and fuel imports and using AfCFTA as a platform to raise productivity and investment, the UNDP says.
The Russian conflict has shown the extent to which Africa is integrated in the global economy, Sanni argues. He notes a “dramatic increase in the need for financing” among African corporates and governments as currencies have been devalued and inflation has climbed.
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